European Technical Assessments explained 

The new Construction Products Regulation (CPR) came into force in the UK and the European Union on the 1st July 2013.

 

Why the law came into force? 

The Construction Products Regulations (CPR), which were adopted in the UK to enforce the European Construction Products Directive. The aim of the directive is to harmonize the safety performance of construction products across the EU and they apply to anything placed on the market, whether imported or manufactured in the EU. 

 

How does it affect my business? 

The CPR aims to ensure the reliability of information on the performance of construction products, information which is of interest to designers, constructors, public authorities and consumers. This is achieved through harmonized European product standards and European Technical Assessments using a common technical language and uniform assessment methods. 

 

The CPR can be enforced by the Trading Standards authority. There will be a huge cost of product recalls and fines to organisations that are found not to be complying with CPR. In severe cases Directors face imprisonment. 

 

Who does this affect?  

The main organisations this affects but not exclusively are:

  • Manufacturers of construction products
  • Importers of construction products
  • Distributors of construction products
  • Designers
  • Specifiers
  • Builders.  

 

Harmonized Technical Specifications 

The Harmonized Technical Specification defines methods of assessing and declaring all the performance characteristics. These characteristics, required by regulations in any Member State, affect the ability of construction products to meet seven basic requirements for construction works:

  • Mechanical resistance and stability
  • Safety in case of fire
  • Hygiene, health and environment
  • Safety and accessibility in use
  • Protection against noise
  • Energy economy and heat retention
  • Sustainable use of natural resources.  

 

When do I need a European Technical Assessment (ETA)?

There are hundreds of harmonized product standards however, what happens if your product does not fall into those categories? This is likely to the case for innovative products or new products to the market which you will get to market. 

 

A European Technical Assessment (ETA) can be issued for any construction product not covered or not fully covered by a harmonized standard. The ETA provides the voluntary way for the manufacturer to CE-mark a construction product. 

 

ETAs can be issued if at least one of these applies:

  • The product does not fall within the scope of any existing harmonized product standard
  • The assessment method provided for in the harmonized standard is not appropriate for at least one essential characteristic of that product
  • The harmonized standard does not provide for any assessment method in relation to at least one essential characteristic of that product.  

 

Next Steps to obtaining a European Technical Assessment (ETA) 

Whether you're looking for more information, or to get a quote, contact one of our ETA experts today to start your journey and let us help you to meet the requirements of the law. 

 

Our technical experts have many years and involvement with the European Organisation for Technical Assessment (EOTA) attending regular meetings to discuss changes and amendments to ETAs. We offer a large range of schemes under the CPR. We offer a 360° approach to testing and certification which helps our customers’ products and material get to market on time and with minimal risk to the organisation. 

 

We also offer a suite of training courses, click here to discover more. 

 

These are the areas we are accredited for as a Technical Assessment Body: 

  • Doors, windows, shutters, gates and related building hardware
  • Thermal insulation products
  • Composite insulating kits/systems
  • Wood based panels and elements
  • Reinforcing and pre-stressing steel for concrete (and ancillaries)
  • Post tensioning kits
  • Structural metallic products and ancillaries
  • Road construction products
  • Flat glass, profiled glass and glass block products
  • Fixings
  • Building kits, units and prefabricated elements
  • Fire stopping, fire sealing and fire protective products
  • Fire retardant products.